Cicada Omega
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Cicada Omega

Band Americana Blues

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Cicada Omega- These Bones
I have been blessed with the opportunity of listening to These Bones by Cicada Omega before it's release date on June 6th. After listening to it four times, I can honestly say that they have exceeded my expectations.

This album was recorded on a shoestring budget with most of the engineering duties assumed by the drummer, Dave Rue. In my humble opinion, albums recorded using Pro-Tools or Cubase have the tendency to sacrifice the raw integrity of the music in exchange for a polished, radio friendly sound. However, this record successfully captures the visceral energy of the band's live performances, despite the fact that it was produced on a Macintosh computer. 

"Four Horsemen" is the perfect introduction to Cicada Omega, because it sets the mood for the rest of the record with its hip-shaking rhythms, incendiary slide guitar solos and an infectious chorus proclaiming:

We are Cicada Omega- Hell Yeah!
The Four Horsemen- Cicada Omega- Hell Yeah!
From the New Blue Moon-Cicada Omega- Hell Yeah!
A Plague of Locust Upon You

Elsewhere on this record, Cicada Omega performs exuberant renditions of traditional gospel and blues songs such as "Ring Like Gold and "This Time Another Year" that sound like they were taken straight from the field recordings of Alan Lomax. Other highlights on the record include the funky blues number, "Big Black Chain" with funk-inflected wah-wah bass and searing slide guitar, the transcendental desert-blues boogie of "Devil's Elbow" and the mellow strum-along folk of "These Bones".

A complete list of Cicada Omega's musical influences would be too comprehensive to list here, but it is evident that the spirit of John Lee Hooker, Captain Beefheart, Junior Kimbrough and the Staples Singers lives on through their music. The band traverses all over the proverbial musical map, making frequent forays into blues, gospel, rock and folk. However, no stone is left unturned in their journey towards discovery. Each song is a little space in time that evokes memories of days gone by with a glimmer of hope for what the future holds. - Eclectic Grooves


Funky, abrasive, "junkyard soul" quartet from Portland drawing on Fat Possum blues, Beefheart's Americana absurdism and chicken wire roadhouse rawk.


- Connect Savannah


If our town was one of juke joints and wooden shacks with stages protected by chicken wire, then Cicada Omega would be the house band of highest demand. The local rapscallions make with the bluesy low-fi country that has all the urgency of a call to battle, but still clutches enough subtlety to make their latest, These Bones, a delightful journey into some junkyard soul. While their rockabilly roots do show, Bones is best during tracks like “I Smell Smoke” and campfire shout-along “This Time,” where the volume is low and vocalist Reverend B.D. Winfield’s voice warbles like a ghostly recording broadcast through a dusty Victrola. EAC - Portland Mercury


"Beware! Cicada Omega brings that dirty Kentucky hill holler boogie to DBF by way of their adopted town of Portland, Oregon. Fully strapped with banjos, suitcase bass, guitars, drums and car parts percussion, and snake calling voices shoutin’ hard to their heavens and earth, both, to call up Dock Boggs, John Lee, The Wolf, Ali Farka, Funkadelic, R.L. and Junior. Wanna bet they can do it?" - Rick Saunders


Cicada Omega:
These four Portlandites (transplants from Kentucky) use homemade instruments and found objects to make down-home, whiskey soaked, driving, slightly ominous foot stompin' American music. - Eugene Weekly


The band's swamp stomps have a certain animalistic appeal, like you should be listening to them while drinking moonshine and casting spells in a mossy southern cemetery. Their musical arsenal includes "kitchenware percussion" and "snake handling" - its' bourbon 'n' fried chicken-inspired blues-folk can be downright beautiful. - Willamette Week


Discography

"These Bones" full-length studio album (2008)
"Live @ John Henry's" CD (2008)
"Live @ the Pepper" CD (2007)
"Cicada Omega" self titled e.p. (2005)
We have one streaming track on our website -
http://www.cicadaomega.com/ .
We have 6 tracks on our Myspace site.
http://www.myspace.com/cicadaomega
"These Bones" is available @ CD Baby
We are currently working on a new album.

Photos

Bio

Cicada Omega is a southern original. The music is a continuation of blues, country, gospel, R&B and rock traditions. It is an other-wordly blend of pounding rhythm, southern evangelism and electrified junk. With two drummers, a home-made upright bass, cigar-box guitar, and electric guitar, mixed with the chants, screams, and preaching from a charismatic front man, their music takes traditional music, puts it in a blender, and turns it up to the breaking point. They have been described as "southern goth" or "gospel punk," but they defy categories by reinventing musical traditions rather than simply following them.

As strange as it all may sound, it comes from the most honest of places.
It is the music of four Kentuckians who have a 15 year history. People have come and gone, band names have changed, and the music has evolved. But the root is still the same. They write songs that get you moving while telling you stories about lost souls, indians, aliens, sex, the Devil, and the mysterious, strange south. It is juke-joint music deeply rooted in blues and gospel, but also takes off into other realms. If asked for influences you would find not only John Lee Hooker, the Staples Singers, and Dr. John, but also Black Sabbath, Prince, and Hank Williams.

The group is fronted by preacher-guitarist sooth-sayer and harmonica man Reverend B.D. Winfield. With a wide vocal range , he acts as a catalyst much like an auctioneer selling soul.

The drums are split and doubled. Dave Rue plays a traditional kit that keeps everything in line. And Salim Sundiata Sanchez mixes it up with latin percussion and found objects. The two combine to work like a voodoo machine producing hypnotic rhythms with endless energy and style.

The bass is played by John McColley.
Well, that is, if you can call it a "bass." He plays an electrified oil barrel upright bass. (You just have to see it to believe it.) He likes loud, dirty low tones that carry a solid rhythm in between everything. John also makes and plays cigar-box guitar.

The vocals are split between Sanchez, McColley, and Winfield, with the Reverend taking lead. It often comes down to call and response type vocals with stomping and yelling, each member displaying his own style.

The name comes from the insect cicada.
The cicada is a loud, flying insect that lives in the south. It is a cousin to the locust mentioned in Revelations. Cicada Omega stands for that last plague. They're sort of the unruly ones bringing up the rear.

As a whole, the group gives a refreshing sound to the music of the deep south. And when you see them live, you take away an experience like you've never had, and that you'll never forget. So come prepared to shake, holler, laugh and be intoxicated, for they, "are Cicada Omega and they bring new age, old age, space age transcendental junkyard blues from the
dark and bloody ground of Kentucky."

Cicada Omega is currently located in Portland, Oregon and plays mostly on the west coast. They have shared the stage with local and national acts such as Hillstomp, Th' Legendary Shack Shakers, Rollie Tussing, Slim Cessna's Auto Club, O' Death, Drunken Prayer, T Model Ford, Bob Logg III, Black Diamond Heavies and Scott H. Biram.